From Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown

Too Many Hypocrites in Sierra Leone Journalism
By Sylvia Olayinka Blyden
Oct 4, 2010, 12:39

I read the piece by one of our local Sierra Leone journalist in which he claims that the cogent, hard-hitting articles that have been exposing the criminally-minded and dishonest Christiana Thorpe are demeaning to journalism. Hogwash!

The exposures and strong language are a wake-up call to all Patriots of this Republic. This is what Journalists do. Patriotic Journalists, with foresight, bring issues with the potential for national backlash and crisis, right to the fore for national consciousness to be raised on them regardless of the controversial nature of the issues. In the process, we proactively save lives and property.

Those who love Sierra Leone better start asking of themselves some really hard questions now! Is Christiana Thorpe the only person out of five million Sierra Leoneans who is qualified to conduct Presidential Elections that we must sacrifice our country’s peace and stability just to ensure she conducts the elections? Are people aware of the simmering *RAGE* burning just beneath the surface amongst many SLPP supporters over the illegal and dishonest actions of Christiana Thorpe?

Do we want to risk this country’s peace and stability by molly-coddling up to Christiana Thorpe with soft bye-o-bye-baby words rather than tell her the hard truth about the consequences of the path she and President Koroma have chosen to tread? Will this not simply strengthen her recalcitrant stance that ‘only she’ is fit to conduct elections in which almost half the country says they do not want her to conduct our elections for them? Why Molly-coddle Christiana Thorpe?

Patriotic Journalists do not molly-coddle up with an Elections Chief who was appointed in the middle of controversy that saw the country’s largest opposition party walk out of Parliament in protest at the refusal to honour the implied dictates of the Constitution’s Section 32(3). Such journalists who sweep the concerns of the country’s main opposition Sierra Leone People’s Party under the carpet and try to force undue credibility on an incredulous situation are to be reprimanded! History will judge them very harshly! Very Harshly! I hope SLAJ’s Leadership is listening!


Now, back to the columnist I started off with. According to the said journalist, he confesses that too many questions surround the results of the 2007 Elections such as the unprecedented walk-out of 40% of the Electoral Commissioners in protest at the flawed results; the erratic removal of the NEC website with the flawed data on it and other such questionable vices that surround the Elections Chair.

The same gentleman seems to believe that there are too many hypocrites in Sierra Leone today who should have told Christiana Thorpe that she should have rejected the position given the controversy but who are keeping quiet because of hypocrisy.

Read what he writes:

If you ask me, I will have no option but to say that Christiana Thorpe should have rejected her re-appointment. Yes, she calls herself a ‘woman of heroism and valor’ and therefore, should not accept any appointment that is seen as one sided; the opposition SLPP walked away and made no contribution to the celebrations in the well of parliament. Again, this is where the rottenness of whom the ordinary ‘Salone’ man is.

Well, as far as I am concerned, the article was a typical example of four fingers pointing back at him because there are too many hypocrites in the world of Journalism today in Sierra Leone. Our journalism has too many hypocrites who are too afraid to use the correct terms fearing they are too strong whilst others are too shy of stepping on toes of our rulers for fear of this or that repercussion.

I do not belong to that category of Journalists. I say things as I see them. And the way I see things, Dr. Christiana Thorpe is a disgrace to Sierra Leone who seems to be exercising tunnel-vision in pursuit of her selfish agenda at the expense of the peace and stability this country needs to maintain. There is no other way to describe that woman. We need to call a spade a spade.


Describing Christiana Thorpe as the disgrace she is, does not in any way demean me or my newspaper. If anything, it increases the profile of this newspaper and writer as amongst those who are not afraid to stand up and speak out regardless of who is affected as long as it is in the interest of the country.

Why wait until 2012 to start to write when the country might then be *ON FIRE* because of Christiana Thorpe and the erroneous way she believes Elections should be run for which she is yet to show remorse? No, we will not wait until 2012 to shout the Creole refrain of ‘If Ar Bin Know!’; We will not wait. We will speak now!

This is going to sound sinister but let me clearly state that I have kept quiet for the past three years on some explosive 2007 Elections Results information because I want peace and stability in this country. The SLPP Leadership of 2007 and even up to this day has been kept in the dark about a lot of issues and this has been for the best. However, who knows what might be the mindset of the SLPP Leadership in 2012 and the mindset of the 2012 SLPP Presidential Candidate? The mindset might not be as naive and gullible towards certain international actors. Come 2012, we might have some really smart and savvy politicians at the helm of SLPP affairs whom will see what their predecessors failed to see, resist any shenanigans with elections results and cause an attendant national backlash.


So, for those of us with the power to inform and educate on issues, why wait until that time when it would be too late to make amends and a national backlash might occur? This is why I am not going to sit down and allow Christiana Thorpe to run 2012 Elections without raising red flags! If after I raise all the red flags, we still, as a Nation, allow her to conduct the elections, I will sit well with my conscience knowing I did my darned best. And come what may, Posterity will judge me well...

Finally, let no-one make any mistake on this issue. I will not be intimidated as I correctly describe Christiana Thorpe. You all know by now intimidating tactics or manufacturing gender-based insults against me simply do not work with me. I will continue to write that Dr. Christiana Thorpe should NOT conduct the 2012 Presidential and General Elections in Sierra Leone. She is unfit, totally unfit and in more ways than one. I am doing my work as a Journalist. There is nothing demeaning about it.

Stay tuned for my upcoming piece on the BALLOT VALIDATING STAMP.

More Anon!

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